The Junior School Symposium

The Junior School Symposium is now a firm part of the Junior School curriculum and the free learning we promote.  Having started in 2015 we team up with James Allen’s Prep School and more recently Dulwich Wood Primary School with all children working together on different workshops, issues and activities. To date, we have had themes of ‘Movement’, ‘Pattern and Chaos’, ‘Time’ and ‘Conflict and Resolution’.

Teachers from both Junior and Senior Schools as well as outside providers ensure a range of challenging, thought provoking sessions for all. If any pupil was feeling apprehensive about working with new children their fears are quickly dispelled; discussions become lively as confidence increases. In all the varied sessions, it is lovely to see groups of girls and boys working really constructively together: focussed, engaged and thoughtful. By the end of the day, every child has experienced a range of challenges to delve deeply into the theme through: thinking, exploring, problem solving, discussion, debate, analysis, evaluation and creativity.

Activities really do vary. In our ‘Conflict and Resolution’ theme, students enjoyed a Battle between Knights as well as a magician with an important environmental message! The previous year with the theme of ‘Time’, the drumming workshop and speedstackers quickly became firm favourites. The latter quite possibly inspired by the short clip of the champion speed stacker who is a pupil at Dulwich College Singapore.

A rapidly growing aspect of the day is strengthening links with other schools in the Dulwich College community around the world. Dulwich College Singapore and Dulwich College Seoul hosted their Symposia too. Short films created by talented crews in each school were then circulated so that all the children could connect with their peers around the world. This growing bond around such an exciting initiative makes it a truly global event that I know we all wish to develop further over the next few years.

Victoria Scott
Director of Studies

Junior School Symposium TIME

Reflections from the children:

It was fascinating to learn about the Mayan language and civilisation- even though they lived so long ago they knew so much. The Physics talk was mind blowing but amazing at the same time. Altogether I had a great day. Thank you.

In a Philosophy session we really expanded our thinking and minds- until they couldn’t expand any more.

I really enjoyed the Science show at the end. Everybody came out saying that they had brain freeze because it was so challenging but I didn’t find it that bad. I learned that the faster pace you’re living at, the shorter you’ll think time feels. Speed Stacking requited huge skill. I wouldn’t exactly call myself a speed stacker (yet) I’m more of a medium stacker. Overall it was a brilliant day.

It was a nice change to have the JAGS girls here, it’s different when they are here. I learned a lot about adaptation in Survival of the Fittest, Ancient civilisations and complicated physics. Thank you to everyone involved in the symposium. I absolutely loved it, it was my favourite symposium.

I really enjoyed making the sand timers in the DT room because it was quite practical and I had to think about how to design one that would work. It made me wonder what it would be like to have only sand timers, and maybe the sun, to help us tell the time. I also enjoyed the Survival of the Fittest session where I learned about adaptation, visible and invisible genes. I found it very inspiring. I think that Mrs Southern organised a great symposium with great teachers, cool activities and- girls!

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